Last updated on December 27th, 2020 at 11:38 am
A questionable source exhibits one or more of the following: extreme bias, consistent promotion of propaganda/conspiracies, poor or no sourcing to credible information, a complete lack of transparency and/or is fake news. Fake News is the deliberate attempt to publish hoaxes and/or disinformation for the purpose of profit or influence (Learn More). Sources listed in the Questionable Category may be very untrustworthy and should be fact checked on a per article basis. Please note sources on this list are not considered fake news unless specifically written in the reasoning section for that source. See all Questionable sources.
- Overall, we rate MercoPress Questionable based on a lack of transparency and poor sourcing techniques that borders on plagiarism.
Reasoning: Lack of Transparency, Poor Sourcing
World Press Freedom Rank: Uruguay 19/180
Established in 1993, MercoPress is a news agency based in Montevideo, Uruguay. MercoPress’s main focus is delivering news from Mercosur member countries. Mercosur is a trade and political bloc comprising Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, and Venezuela. The website has content sections that cover topics such as “agriculture, economy, energy and oil, entertainment, environment, fisheries, health and science, investments, politics, real estate, and tourism.”
The website lacks transparency as they do not name authors, editors, or ownership.
Funded by / Ownership
MercoPress provides an about page however they do not explain who owns them. Revenue is derived through advertising.
Analysis / Bias
In review, MercoPress republishes summarized news from other sources such as this Japan plans to catch some 383 large whales this season. This story originates from Japan Today, without proper citations indicating it is not original. Articles and headlines sometimes contain emotionally loaded language such as this “Trump issues new pardons for crooks and including the father of his son in law Jared Kushner.” The wording of this story is very similar to an article written by Barron’s Magazine 3 days earlier.
Although the tagline reads “South Atlantic News Agency”, a majority of reporting is on the European Union and UK news such as this Johnson will travel to India next month, first trip since departure from the EU. They also frequently report on the Falkland Islands, which consists of mainly English speaking Brits such as this Boris Johnson assures he will raise the Falklands’ issue at the EU. When it comes to the sourcing of information, they don’t. While they are not directly plagiarizing other sources such as Reuters, the wording is very similar and used without credit. You can compare stories, MercoPress UK variant of coronavirus is up to 70% more transmissible, but no sufficient evidence that it is more lethal, while Reuters reports FACTBOX-UK says new coronavirus variant up to 70% more transmissible. The wording is almost identical with Reuters originally reporting the story a day earlier.
Editorially, MercoPress does not produce op-eds, in fact, they don’t really produce any original reporting. When covering politics they cover mostly British politics that hold negative views toward Brexit such as this Scotland claims the post-Brexit trade accord was “a bad deal for fishing”. In general, the news is reported factually and from reliable sources, however, MercoPress does not credit these sources and provides little transparency as to who they are, therefore the information provided may be questionable without investigating the original source.
Failed Fact Checks
- None to date
Overall, we rate MercoPress Questionable based on a lack of transparency and poor sourcing techniques that borders on plagiarism. (12/12/2016) Updated (M. Huitsing 12/27/2020)